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  INTERVIEW WITH CHRIS HENDERSON OF 3 DOORS DOWN

Lee Fitzsimmons, Photos by Wendy Pritchard

lee fitzsimmons



Having the opportunity to catch up with people of whom you have a great appreciation of their music and talent is one of the many perks of doing this job. Meeting the myriad of interesting characters and hearing tales of note that are mentioned lends an air of intrigue and downright enjoyment to an otherwise normal life.

chris henderson 3 doors down


So when the opportunity arose to catch up with Chris Henderson, backstage on 3 Doors Down's Manchester leg of their tour, I leaped at the chance. I would like to say a huge thank you to MetalTalk, the label, the backstage team and indeed Chris himself for providing me the opportunity. There may have been a little mix up with the dates but even that little clerical error was swept away promptly and I cannot fault anybody involved.

Article continues below...



Anyway back to Chris and heading backstage, the first thing that struck me about this, can I add insanely nice guy, was the sheer comfortable and welcoming environment of his dressing room. I have done some interviews in my time where the locale was not ideal, even down a fire escape at a venue, but this time I may as well been conducting it in my home. Beautiful and chilled, this filled me with high hopes for the conversation to come. All this and I had barely got out a hello at this point.

Start at the beginning, it's always an excellent practice... So anyway Chris, how the hell was the Scotland leg of your tour my man?

"We love coming to the UK, and Scotland! The crowds here are so much more aggressive than they are in the States, the crowd surfing but they are also more appreciative of kind of what we do. Its not like, well in America people kind of give you this look like 'Where's the fire? How come you haven't said fuck?' whereas over here they don't really care about that stuff. It's more about the songs, the band and the romance between the two.

"The band to the fans and the fans to the band because we have this whole relationship with these people in the UK that we don't have with anyone else. The fans follow us on Twitter, they talk to us, they come to many shows. Its different cause they don't tend to do that in the States!"

So you heard it here first guys and girls, keep chatting to the guys on Twitter, they love it! So then what's different about the UK audience, if indeed anything you can put your finger on Chris?

"It's like you are there together. Like 'We are coming to play and they are coming to see us play'. We are all going to do the same thing. Like being on a football team, but in America it's not like that. It's very separate and you have to do a lot of different things to really get them hooked in that you don't have to do here. It can be just about the band. That's the way it should be!"

chris henderson 3 doors down


Have to stand in total agreement with that statement. This is what you go to see the guys for. Not for the 'What Katy did next?' stage to see how they are going to change it up but all about the music and the guys! As a band though Chris you have had phenomenal worldwide success, everybody and their mothers has heard of 3 Doors Down, massive success story. Can you attribute this to anything in particular?

"Well I think, one of the things we are kind of known for is playing a LOT of shows. Whether or not we are good at it I don't know."

Well I am bloody reviewing it my friend so hopefully it will be.

"...Hahahaha, well then it's based on what you think. So that I don't know but we do definitely get out there and do it. Give it our all! Get on a bus and we go, we fly, we fucking end up in this town, that town. We are here, and then here and tomorrow we are gonna be there. That's what it's all about, going after it relentlessly."

So to any new bands reading this firmly entrenched in their mind set that it's a short gigging process and then you make it?

"It's a bitch man! Can't do it like that."

I thought a nice little step in here would be to highlight the works that 3 Doors Down have done on the charitable stage. Many people worldwide know their music but few know just how deep their collective caring natures run. The Better Than Life foundation was started in 2003 and not a lot of people in this country know about this side to Chris and the guys, so I wanted to give him a little opportunity to let this be known further. So Chris, what's it all about?

"It's something we started eight years ago cause we had played a show for another charity and when it came down to it we had to pay a whole bunch of money out of our own pockets to play that show. It was in a sold out arena, 10,000 people, so it shouldn't of went like that and we were really pissed off about that but were like 'Well what can we do about it'. So we started our own foundation.

"The money that was supposed to be given to the charities for that one gig well they didn't get any money. So we said we are gonna do our own show and give our own money to those charities direct cause they got shit on last time. That's how we got started. We give to women's and children's charities. There are a lot of places that won't give to those; battered women's shelters, no-one gives to those. Only people that care are the people that are there, so if it is not part of your life you don't tend to feel obligated.

"Also give to children's charities that people tend to forget about like special needs homes for children coping with downs syndrome, living in assisted living. These places take care of these kids for a very long time and we appreciate this and give to those types of charities."

I honestly felt this had to be mentioned here as I believe that truly great bands and personalities have other aspects to their being. Their music and their public face are a couple of huge aspects but there is also things happening behind the scenes, like charitable work, that some bands don't beat you over the head with but deserve a spotlight shone upon them occasionally. On a personal note, thank you guys for all you are doing.

chris henderson 3 doors down


Right back to the music! Delving straight in, what's your favourite track from either the new album or the backcatalog (spelt in the American way in honour of our guest)?

"I got one on the new record man! 'Believer'! We are not a Metal, Metal band but that's kind of our tribute towards being a Metal band. We kind of wanted to be one when we grew up, but we just could never pull it off. We are all just so nice and our hair. We dress and don't cuss hahahaha. That song though is kind of our tribute to the Metal bands we loved when growing up. That's how that song ended up on the record and its fun as hell to play."

Whoa, whoa whoa! Which bands where those Chris? Can't slide by without elaborating now!

"Megadeth is one that all of us in the band can collectively say yeah to! Influenced us a lot! Being from a small town in Mississippi it was hard to get music there; no cable, no MTV, or a radio station. We would get these bands years after!"

So no embarrassing musical history here then! Right now for my trademark abstract questions! Which Hollywood actor would play you in a movie about 3 Doors Down Chris? Laughter ensues before an answer is decided upon.

"Chris Farley probably but he is gone so it might be hard to book him for it. Current actor obviously right?"

Yep Chris man, dead ones tend to be a bit wooden on set and don't respond to direction well, adlib like a bitch and are very hard to please!

"...George Clooney? Can I get George Clooney? Yeah I would like to get George Clooney to play me because I am the good looking one!"

Another weird yet staple question for me! Which live artist would you sacrifice to bring a dead one back to life and whom would you bring back?

"Wooooow! Ah man I don't wanna piss a lot of people off. Gotta really think about this one. I'm just friends with everyone..."

Justin Bieber has been one bandied about a lot; can I tempt you on that one Chris?

"You know man you gotta give that little fucker credit, he is doing it."

chris henderson 3 doors down


I could see the pressure of deciding between life and death for some random artist was getting to Chris so I decided to give him a free pass and allow his dead to walk without any sacrificing.

"Can I bring back more than one? Morrison and Hendrix for sure. And the Rev from Avenged Sevenfold, real tragedy when that guy passed."

Good choices methinks Chris! The question before makes the answer to this next question quite appropriate, which song do you wish you guys had written?

"Oh fuck, 'Stairway To Heaven' would be the first one, let's go with that one. 'White Christmas is another. 'Jingle Bells' would be another good one."

And the gig in world's history would you have loved to have attended?

"The Montrose Jazz Festival when Hendrix burnt his guitar. It would have been a better show for me to attend than say Woodstock."

Right this is the time to test his creativity now! If the National Inquirer was to produce a headline about 3 Doors Down, what would it probably read?

"I think it would be one of us probably having the first baby born to a guy. What I would like for us to happen? Cause nothing like this ever happens to us cause we are so down home and southern is one of us could marry a famous celebrity and have a little scandal."

On that note readers the door was knocked upon and our time was up. On the one hand such a sad thing as this guy I could have happily whiled away the hours talking about inane things and basking in the comfort of his dressing room. But on the other the show was to start very soon and I was about to have a fucking awesome time.

Chris Henderson, you have been a fucking delight and made my job that much easier in writing this up. Thank you dude.

"Thank you guys! You are very, very welcome."

Quickfire questions:

What would get you to sign a contract for 3 Doors Down intergalactic gig?
"Three breasted alien females, hahahaha."

Horror, action or comedy?
"Horror."

Fast food or home-cooked?
"Depends on the day but I will go with home-cooked."

Cars or Motorbikes?
"Motorbikes."

Sun or snow vacations?
"Sun."

CD or Digital Download?
"Downloads, legal downloads. Ease of access."

Football, Baseball, Basketball or Soccer?
"Football! Saints!"

25.4.12











 

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"We have never done anything like this before and we knew the UK was the only place to do it. That's all we're gonna say about it!"

gary rossington LYNYRD SKYNYRD UPDATE WITH MORE CANCELLATIONS DUE TO GARY ROSSINGTON ILLNESS
"Currently the band hopes to resume touring on Thursday 4th August at The Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion, The Woodlands..."

extreme EXTREME CELEBRATE 25TH ANNIVERSARY OF 'PORNOGRAFFITI' ALBUM WITH 'PORNOGRAFFITI LIVE 25/METAL MELTDOWN'
"Some of these songs were never played live before so we had to go back and relearn them for the tour."

ozzy osbourne OZZY OSBOURNE: "I'M NOT HAPPY BEING SOBER"
"It scares me. I hear all the time people say that they have another drink in them but they may not have another sobriety in them..."

paul rodgers IT'S NOT ALL RIGHT NOW! PAUL RODGERS SUES DONALD TRUMP
"We will make America great again. God bless you and good night, I love you."

heavy metal HEAVY METAL HELPS PEOPLE DEAL WITH MORTALITY ACCORDING TO OFFICIAL STUDY
"Metal music can be seen as cultural good for fans and thereby can form part of their social identity."

motorhead MOTÖRHEAD STILL RUNNING DOWN THE HIGHWAY: PHIL, MIKKEY AND EDDIE ALL GEARED UP FOR FORTHCOMING DATES
"Every snare hit I do from now on until the end of my career will be a small tribute to Lemmy..."

iron maiden IRON MAIDEN'S STEVE HARRIS DROPS THE PRICE OF HIS ESSEX MANSION BY £1MILLION
The eight-bedroom mansion was on the market for £6.75million in 2012 but it's "guide price" is now a mere £3.95million...

hrh aor ALL GUNS BLAZING FOR NEW HRH AOR 5 ANNOUNCEMENT
Phil Lewis & Tracii Guns unite under the L.A. Guns banner once again for next year's HRH AOR 5 being held next March at Camp HRH in North Wales...

deep purple DEEP PURPLE 'LIVE AT THE NEC' DVD ON THE WAY: FAREWELL JON, WELCOME DON
The two share keyboard duties during the night in a very fitting "passing-of-the-torch" moment...

status quo ROCK 'TIL YOU DROP WITH STATUS QUO 1981-1986 VINYL BOX SET
In addition to the studio albums the box set will include an extra disc of b-sides and extended mixes...

zz top ZZ TOP TO RELEASE THEIR VERY FIRST OFFICIAL LIVE ALBUM IN SEPTEMBER
"In an abstract surrealism style, this collection is a definitive chronicle of the band hangin' together for four plus deluxe decades..."

tygers of pan tang TYGERS OF PAN TANG "SPECIAL TIME" HAS COME WITH NEW RELEASE
"The new Tygers album is finished, done and dusted and ready to unleash on our 'Tygertastic' audience. You're gonna love this one, it's a MONSTER..."

andy fraser ANDY FRASER OF FREE'S LAST RECORDING WITH SAIICHI SUGIYAMA ONLINE HERE
"'Melting Away' became one of Andy's last recordings. He still had so much to offer and I was really looking forward to continuing to work with him."

ritchie blackmore RITCHIE BLACKMORE'S RAINBOW TO PLAY AGAIN BUT WITH LESS DEEP PURPLE SONGS
"I would do probably ninety-five percent Rainbow songs; that's what they seem to want to hear. And it didn't occur to me. I just naturally assumed they wanted to hear everything."

saxon EXCLUSIVE: THIS IS WHAT OUR FAVOURITE ROCKERS THINK OF THE CURRENT POLITICAL CLIMATE
Comment from Saxon, Slash, Thunder, Iron Maiden, Uli Jon Roth, Hawkwind, Cher, Johnny Rotten, Machine Head And More...

beyond the black UK EXCLUSIVE: BEYOND THE BLACK SINGER JENNIFER HABEN IS LOST IN FOREVER AS FIVE MEMBERS DEPART THE BAND
"I have enjoyed the time together with the guys very much and am grateful for everything we have achieved together in Germany. I am currently looking for new colleagues..."

cats in space CATS IN SPACE SET TO RELEASE SLADE CLASSIC WITH DANNY BOWES OF THUNDER ON GUEST VOCALS
"It's is one of my favourite Slade songs, so when they asked me to sing on their version it took me a good second and a half to say yes..."

guns n roses WAS BREAKING NEWS: GUNS N' ROSES ADD MORE TOUR DATES FOR OCTOBER AND NOVEMBER
The Gunners' newly announced dates are for South America with ten dates in Argentina, Brazil, Peru, Chile and Colombia with more to be announced soon...

keith moon YOU WON'T GET FOOLED WITH OFFICIAL KEITH MOON COMMEMORATIVE DRUM HEAD
Manufactured as a special, custom product by Remo, these 14" high-gloss drum heads are a perfect collector's item for true fans of the legendary drummer and The Who...

the answer WAS BREAKING NEWS: THE ANSWER AND THE DEAD DAISIES ANNOUNCE NOVEMBER UK TOUR
"The fact that we get to debut this new material with our mates The Dead Daisies just adds to the rush we're currently experiencing. You really don't want to miss this one!"

ian gillan IAN GILLAN SAYS: "IT'S A WONDERFUL THING, VINYL..." WITH NEW COLLECTION ABOUT TO BE RELEASED
"You just bought something significant, not easily disposable. And look at the sleeves - aren't they cool..."

quireboys THE QUIREBOYS NEW ALBUM ON THE WAY: "THE LYRICS ON THE TITLE TRACK ARE SOME OF SPIKE'S BEST EVER!"
"I approached the songwriting from a different angle and it felt good. There's a lot of passion there."

48 hours 48 HOURS TO ROCK THE UK TO A CITY OF ASHES
"We're hitting the road in September for a co-headline tour with our broseph's City Of Ashes! This will be one of the unsigned tours of the year!"

hammerfall WAS BREAKING NEWS: LIVE LIFE LOUD WITH HAMMERFALL ON 2017 EUROPEAN TOUR: NEW ALBUM ON THE WAY
"We can't wait to get back on stage again to have a gigantic Heavy Metal party every night with all our Templar friends!"

joe perry AEROSMITH GUITARIST JOE PERRY REPORTEDLY SUFFERS HEART ATTACK DURING HOLLYWOOD VAMPIRES GIG
"Thanks to everyone asking about our brother Joe Perry," Alice Cooper wrote. "He is stable right now, with family and is under the best care."

onslaught ONSLAUGHT, BEHOLDER AND ANIHILATED TOUR PROMISES TO BE A TOUR DE FORCE
"By the time we hit the road in November it will be well over two-and-a-half years since we did the last run and we feel the time is now right..."

arw ARW (JON ANDERSON, TREVOR RABIN AND RICK WAKEMAN) ANNOUNCE BAND FOR UPCOMING WORLD TOUR
"I have played with arguably the three greatest bass players ever and I can't wait to play with one of them again!"

marillion MARILLION UNVEIL 'THE NEW KINGS' FROM FORTHCOMING STUDIO ALBUM 'FEAR'
'The New Kings' can also be heard on Marillion's current tour which starts on Monday 11th July in Barcelona...

michael des barres AN AMERICAN WRITER ASKS WHY IT TAKES A BRITISH EX-PAT TO ASK, "WHAT'S GOING ON?" MICHAEL DES BARRES HAS THE ANSWER
This incendiary cover of Marvin Gaye's classic confronts America's issues in an incredibly timely and head-on manner...

freedom call FREEDOM CALL RELEASE A NEW METAL HYMN 'HAMMER OF THE GODS', AVAILABLE FOR DOWNLOAD NOW
The trademark bold vocal harmonies remain. The track is taken from forthcoming opus 'Master Of Light'...

guns n roses STEVEN ADLER JOINS GUNS N' ROSES ON STAGE IN OHIO: FOUR FIFTHS OF 'APPETITE' LINE-UP PLAY TOGETHER FOR FIRST TIME SINCE 1990
"On the drums, you might know this guy. Ladies and gentlemen, Mr Steven Adler..."

ac dc AC/DC BASSIST CLIFF WILLIAMS TO RETIRE AFTER ROCK OR BUST WORLD TOUR: "IT'S BEEN SURREAL"
"AC/DC has been... you know, just... I don't know what else I would wanna do. I love the music and I love playing in the band, and I'm all filled up..."

guns n roses GUNS N' ROSES USE THEIR ILLUSION TO SILENCE THE DOUBTERS WITH US TOUR GOING SO FINE
Axl is clearly in his element on this tour, running across the stage to jump on the monitors mid-song and displaying all the panache of a man completely on top of his game...

stray del bromham STRAY TO ROAM AROUND THE UK ON TOUR INCLUDING A RARE REUNION OF THE ORIGINAL LINE-UP
No need to move a mountain as both Stray and Del Bromham's Blues Devils are on their way to a venue near you...

amorettes THE AMORETTES ANNOY THE NEIGHBOURS WITH RAUCOUS NEW SINGLE
'Let The Neighbours Call The Cops' was co- written by vocalist Gill Montgomery and Black Star Riders front man Ricky Warwick...

eagles of death metal WAS BREAKING NEWS: EAGLES OF DEATH METAL WANT YOU SO BAD ON TWO UK DATES IN AUGUST
This is EODM's first visit to the UK since the band were caught up in the terrible events at The Bataclan Theatre in Paris back in November 2015...

soil SOiL 'SHINE ON' THE UK WITH COMPREHENSIVE TOUR
"We are looking forward to seeing some new places and making some new friends this time around..."

acid reign ACID REIGN GET IN FESTIVE MOOD EARLY WITH SPECIAL GIG ANNOUNCEMENT
'Tis the season to Thrash as Acid Reign team up with Shrapnel with far from obnoxious results...

iron maiden IRON MAIDEN: LEGACY OF THE BEAST MOBILE RPG GAME IS OUT NOW
"We've always wanted to make a quality Maiden mobile game as we think the combination of Eddie and the music is so well suited..."

rick parfitt status quo EXCLUSIVE: STATUS QUO'S RICK PARFITT SEEMS TO BE 'FINE FINE FINE' AS HE IS SPOTTED OUT AND ABOUT
Following the recent health scare a picture has emerged online of him taking a walk in Kingston over the weekend...

bullet for my valentine BULLET FOR MY VALENTINE TO PLAY 'THE POISON' IN FULL FOR THE FIRST EVER TIME
"We promised you something special right? See 'The Poison' played in full for the first time in Manchester! Tickets on sale now here..."

alter bridge WAS BREAKING NEWS: ALTER BRIDGE TO HEADLINE ARENAS ACROSS EUROPE THIS WINTER WITH GOJIRA AND VOLBEAT
This will be their biggest headline tour yet with twenty-four dates across fifteen countries, kicking off on November 4th 2016

the mission WAS BREAKING NEWS: BAUHAUS FRONTMAN PETER MURPHY TO GUEST WITH THE MISSION ON THEIR 30th ANNIVERSARY UK TOUR
"Peter's appearance will help make these shows the special events that we always wanted and hoped they'd be..."

iron maiden IRON MAIDEN ILLUSTRATOR DESIGNS SHIRT FOR ONE DIRECTION'S ZAYN MALIK, MAIDEN LAUNCH THIRD TROOPER BEER AND HI-ON-MAIDEN TO HEADLINE PICCSTOCK
A full-bodied beer using a blend of chocolate and crystal malts to give "a roasted malt and caramel backbone with hints of liquorice and honey"...

bruce dickinson BRUCE DICKINSON TO TAKE PART IN TOP GEAR STYLE CHARITY ROAD TRIP
"The enthusiasm from the group is amazing which will lend itself to making it an unforgettable trip..."

anvil WAS BREAKING NEWS: ANVIL ANNOUNCE UK AND EUROPEAN TOUR FOR OCTOBER/NOVEMBER
Anvil will not only be playing dates in Scotland and Wales but also English towns which rarely see major international artists, such as Huddersfield, Doncaster and Grimsby.

status quo IT'S TIME TO GET 'DOWN DOWN' TO BUTLINS AS SECOND STATUS QUO FAN CLUB CONVENTION IS ANNOUNCED
The weekend will feature live music from ex-Quo drummer John Coghlan and his band with long time friend of the band, Jackie Lynton also scheduled to appear...

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